Delight in the medieval character of Taormina while strolling its atmospheric streets and admiring landmarks such the Greek theater from the 2nd century.
After departing from the pier, you will have a short panoramic tour of Messina, pausing for photos of the glorious Cathedral of Messina, which dates to the 12th century. Besides being of historical interest, the church features an animated clock that was the world's largest when added to the bell tower in 1933.
Continuing along the coast to the south, you will approach Taormina, an ancient city that rises almost perpendicularly from the sea. It's a beautiful setting with an alluring medieval character, as you will discover while navigating its narrow, cobbled streets.
As French author Guy de Maupassant wrote of his stay in 1883, "Were a man to pass a single day in Sicily and ask, 'What must one see?' I would answer him without hesitation, Taormina."
Among the highlights are the Arabian-influenced Palazzo Corvaja and the ruins of a 2nd-century Greek theater. It sits on a seaside hilltop with a view of Mount Etna that is so inspiring that it can detract from the entertainers that still perform there in the summer.
After visiting, you will enjoy free time to wander about the areas that interest you the most. You might take in the views from the fragrant public garden or shop along boutique-lined Corso Umberto. The most popular merchandise includes designer fashions, jewelry and colorful ceramic pine cones, a Sicilian symbol of hospitality.